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New lease of life for Navy Panthers

19th May 2009 - 00:00 GMT | by Tony Osborne in Hyeres, France


Eurocopter is test flying a mid-life update for the French Navy’s small fleet of Panther shipboard helicopters.

The prototype AS565 Panther Mk 2 (aircraft 505) first flew last November, but work on the programme was only publicly revealed this week as the aircraft was displayed statically at Hyeres Naval Air Station in South East France.

Work on the project began back in 2003, in conjunction with 36 Flotille, the main operating squadron of the type and the DGA.

Key aims of the update programme are to reduce pilot workload, improve situational awareness and add a self-protection system to the type. 

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Tony Osborne


Tony Osborne

Tony was deputy editor of Defence Helicopter and Rotorhub magazines before joining Aviation Week in …

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